After German we caught a bus to Shinjuku and went to an underground bar called DUG behind the Kinokuniya bookstore. We each started with two vodka and tonics.
“I come here once in a while,” she said. “They don’t embarrass you about drinking in the afternoon.”
“Do you drink in the afternoon a lot?”
“Sometimes,” she said, rattling the ice in her glass. “Sometimes, when the world gets hard to live in, I come here for a vodka and tonic.”
“Does the world get hard to live in?”
“Sometimes,” said Midori. “I’ve got my own special little problems.”
“Like family, like boyfriends, like irregular periods. Stuff.”
“So have another drink.”
I waved the waiter over and ordered two more vodka and tonics.
“Remember how, when you came over that Sunday, you kissed me?” Midori asked. “I’ve been thinking about it. That was nice. Really nice.”
“‘That’s nice,’” she mimicked me. “The way you talk is so weird!”
“Anyhow, I was thinking, that time. I was thinking how great it would be if that had been the first time in my life a boy had kissed me. If I could switch around the order of my life, I would absolutely absolutely make that my first kiss. And then I would live the rest of my life thinking stuff like, Hey, I wonder whatever happened to that boy named Watanabe I gave my first kiss to on the laundry deck, now that he’s fifty-eight? Wouldn’t that be great?”
“Yeah, really,” I said, cracking open a pistachio nut.
With a sunset like this, on a lounge-chair, beside a poolside somewhere: If I were to listen to Tiny Vipers with a girl, maybe a nice girl, we would undoubtedly fall in love, and all would be well and good.
I’ve had my share of the Naokos, and evil Summer Finns and the Sarah Marshalls and the (pre-memory wipe) Clementine Kruczynski.
I’m still waiting for the Midoris and the Autumns (Minka Kelly) and the (post-memory wipe) Clementine Kruczynski. I want to meet you in Montauk. I don’t want to live like a scene from In the Mood for Love
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